Odisha Finance Minister Niranjan Pujari Stresses Banks’ Role Post COVID-19

Bhubaneswar: Minister for Finance and Excise Niranjan Pujari on Thursday stressed on the role of banks and financial institutions in providing livelihood of the people, particularly in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic.

Appreciating the steps of the banks to keep their ATMs open during cyclone Amphan, the Minister said the state government is trying its best to formulate policies for the agriculture sector so that best possible assistance in terms of loans and other assistance can be extended to the farmers. Pujari was speaking at the state-level bankers’ committee meeting here on Thursday.

Since the Centre has sanctioned special package for revival of small and medium scale enterprises in view of the lockdown, he said the SHGs must be provided financial assistance.

Chief Secretary Asit Tripathy called for opening new bank branches in the unbanked panchayats of the state. He also told the banks to extend more loans to pisciculture, food processing, and the manufacturing sector.

Development Commissioner-cum-Additional Chief Secretary Suresh Chandra Mohapatra and Special Secretary, Finance, Ashok Kumar Meena also spoke at the meeting.

The meeting was attended by MSME Principal Secretary Hemant Sharma; Secretary, Fisheries & Animal Husbandry R Reghu; Special Secretary, Finance PK Biswal; UCO Bank Managing Director Goyal and Regional Director, RBI Malla.

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